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Tet in Vietnam is all about traditions, customs, colors, and food. Learn all about it in our article and find out where you can catch the fireworks.
From thousands of decorative flags to street parades and cultural festivities, Vietnam’s National Day is celebrated with full force and exuberance.
Find everything you need to know here about the luxury, overnight train journey from Hue to Hanoi up the Vietnamese coast.
Hanoi is an exciting, bustling city, overrun by cars, scooters, and street vendors. It's a great place to experience Vietnamese culture, from coffee houses to street food to buzzing nightlife. If you fancy learning about Vietnam’s fascinating people and past, there are several good museums too, including the Vietnam Museum of Ethnology and the Museum of Vietnamese History.
Hanoi is also one of the largest transportation hubs in the region. From here you can take a flight to Europe, the Middle East, the US or Canada, as well as many destinations in Southeast Asia including Siem Reap, Bangkok, Singapore, Chiang Mai and Kuala Lumpur. You can also connect to other parts of the country by train and bus, including to Ho Chi Minh City, Hue, Danang, Nha Trang, Sapa and the Northern Highlands, Ha Long Bay and Hoi An.
If you're traveling overland through Southeast Asia, Luang Prabang to Hanoi is a popular route. It's a 720 km (447 mile) journey overland by long distance bus, which takes around a day and a half on a mixture of main highways and smaller, windier roads. It's a long trip through two countries but for those on a budget, it's a cheap alternative to flying. Plus, you’ll get to see plenty of both countries along the way.
There are several routes between Luang Prabang and Hanoi, but most buses take Highway 7 through Laos to the border crossing at Nam Cam. You'll see plenty along the way, as you drive in the mountains, past the remote villages and towns of rural Laos. On the Vietnamese side, you'll travel through the mountainous scenery of Pu Mat National Park.
The fastest way to get from Luang Prabang to Hanoi is on the long distance by Khanh Sinh Tour which takes around 24 hours. This bus is a ‘sleeping bus’, with seats that recline to almost-flat, maximising the chances of getting some sleep during the journey.
The cheapest way to get from Luang Prabang to Hanoi is on the long distance Sleeping Bus (with seats that recline fully) by Naluang with prices starting at $53.50 per person one-way. The journey takes 24-26 hours.
Bookaway customers prefer to book a seat on the long distance sleeping bus by Khanh Sinh Tour. It takes around 24 to 26 hours to reach Hanoi from Luang Prabang, and the bus has comfortable seats which recline fully so you can hopefully get some sleep along the way.
Taking the long distance bus from Luang Prabang to Hanoi is cheaper than flying, but the journey can take an epic 24 to 26 hours. The bus that travels on this route is an air-conditioned ‘sleeping bus’, with fully-reclining seats, giving you the best chance of getting some sleep during the ride. You’ll be given a blanket, some water and there'll be a charging port for your phone or laptop. The driver will make some stops along the way so you can stretch your legs, use the bathroom and get some food and drink.
This is a very long journey, and there are some tips for making it more bearable. The air conditioning can make the bus cold so wear layers, and take earplugs, an eye mask and pillow to help you sleep. Stock up on snacks and water to keep you going between rest stops. Wi-Fi might be patchy, so download any films, music or books in advance. Take some toilet roll and hand sanitizer for bathroom breaks.
As the bus crosses the border, make sure you have your passport and visa document ready - remember, you cannot use a ‘visa-on-arrival’ at land borders (only at international airports) so you’ll need to have obtained your visa in advance. The easiest way to do this is to get an e-visa, which you can apply for online.
When you arrive in Hanoi, you'll be dropped at one of the many bus terminals, which could be some distance from your hotel or guest house, so you’ll probably need to get a taxi or tuk-tuk.
Providing the bus is on time, you’ll arrive in the early evening, but just in case, it's a good idea to let your hotel or guest house know you're arriving on the ‘sleeping bus’ in case of delays en route.
3 buses depart Luang Prabang for Hanoi each day in the afternoon.